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So You Have Ugly Floor Mats? A fix is easy......


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Yea, the big rubber or vinyl floor mat that covers everything and has turned more than 50 shades of grey and looks like crap. If yours is like the one in my Volvo it has a pebble-like finish in all but the foot wells - there it becomes small raised rectangles.


But, making the mat look new again is easy - all you need to do is paint it! Paint? You are possibly thinking that is a dumb idea, but paints are far from the poor quality they were a decade or more ago. We have water based car paints and water based polyurethane. The water is only the suspension agent in new paints - it no longer serves as the binder.


A water based paint made for garage floors is perfect for redoing a big truck floor mat. But, if you want it to stick and stay stuck the old mat must be squeaky clean and free of any cleaner or oily residue. This means scrubbing with something like purple cleaner or TSP and rinsing well. Mom's Little Green Carpet Cleaning Machine worked pretty good for the rinse. A wet/dry vacuum would do the same.


You can roll the paint on with a 6" foam roller or apply it with a brush. How much you need to tape up depends on your skill. Several thin coats are much better than one big sloppy job - especially in the foot wells where those rectangle thingies are. That is an area where you can end up with too much paint. Some sanding with a Scotch Brite Pad or sponge sanding block where the smooth topped rectangles are may help adhesion.


It is tough stuff - it is not going to easily wash or rub off. It really sticks. In fact - you can't get it off even if you want to. Let it dry on your hand or arm and see for yourself. Just pick a color and have a ball!





Look a the floor mat. It is like new.


PS - it cleans well and can be r- coated a few years later to make it like new again. Now you have to take your shoes off before Mom will let you come in ;)



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We went a different way

Bought a nice peice of carpet for 60 bucks. Installed over the rubber mat. Had several small area matts sewn out of the left over material.


But your idea of painting with floor paint is interesting. Especially that it is that flexible and still sticks.


Wonder if they can custom tint that paint.

Tomorrow I will check as I need to stop at lowes for something else


Randy I am glad there is another ginnypig on this forum to do out of the box stuff.


If I would retire maybe I could catch up with your subjects. You had to do that rewire thing....... I was forgetting under the center consol.


Safe travels, Vern

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Vern - I've got the carpet, but binding the edges is an issue. I found a place that will send it out for someone to do it for $1.50 a foot with a $35 minimum. I had them bind all the new carpet for the inside of the camper. For now mat is OK in the truck - but carpet may follow. To do carpet I would want to remove the seats and anything else bolted to the floor - BIG JOB. How would you carpet the foot rest on the driver side? What grade carpet did you use.

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First thing was to find good quality carpet with the correct color.

After we found the carpet we wanted I did not remove the seats. I laid the carpet out and very carefully made patterns of the seat base and gear shift.

Then cut out the carpet with a little extra inside the pattern, but left the sides at the doors extra long.


The carpet we found was of high quality, but it was not long enough front to back. There was enough carpet front to back that it reached to the rear of the cabinet behind the drivers seat.

It was easier with two pieces of carpet to in stall, just had to seam it when all was installed.

After the carpet was cut around the seats and shif lever then just work the rest in as needed.

The carpet tucks under the trim at the door opening. And with good quality carpet it can be cut and fit nice. I did not send the carpet out to be bound. I think I cut the rubber mat out from under the floor door trim as the carpet was about the same thickness.


In my younger years I installed carpet into custom vans so that helped with this project. The carpet is one piece side to side and goes over the foot rest under the pedal.

Get the area rugs bound at a local carpet store. Not cheap but with high quality carpet and area rugs it still looks great.


The carpet has been in place for 9 years , and only the mat at my feet looks warn.


It takes patience and leave alcohol alone for when you are finished cutting for the day. Must be in good state of mind to get in all the positions your need to fit everything in place.

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  • 1 month later...


How well is the paint holding up and how much did you actually need. Jacolyn says that a gallon is an awful lot of paint.



I used maybe a pint (16oz) - possibly a tad more. The rest went on my garage floor :rolleyes: - or perhaps I should say what was left from the garage floor went on my mat. No cracks or peeling but small rust stains appeared around the seat belt floor anchors in the sleeper. IMHO, probably best to remove the anchor bolts before painting the mat.

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Looks great but obviously for show only.


IDEA!: We replaced the vinyl kitchen floor in the fiver with a product from Home Depot called Allure.


It is a resilient vinyl that comes in planks and looks very much like wood. It is a floating floor but can bend where wood or tile can't. In a HDT it would have to go over a smooth base, like 1/4" plywood (marine grade outdoor water proof glue) but would really look and wear nicely. Just thinkin' outta the box, you know. :huh: Next time you are in a HD check it out.

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